Essential IEP Special Education Santa Cruz
We have not written an IEP basics in a while.
There are fundamental best practices for any and all IEPs. As there are new parents joining our ranks all of the time, and experienced parents who would like a refresher, it seemed like a good time to go back to essentials.
WRITE IT DOWN
Conduct everything important via email. If you are not use whether it is important, write it down anyway. You can always delete it later. Verbal agreements can change, there is no record, and (if you run into disagreement later) you have no proof that the conversation ever took place.
What if a key conversation takes place face to face? Often when things get sticky, school staff will call or come over to talk when you are dropping off or picking up your student. That’s fine; have the conversation. As quickly as you can, write down the conversation to the best of your ability. Then send that email detailing the conversation to the person at the school. Typically we’ll write something like “here are notes on our conversation of (date and approximate time).” We don’t do this for every minor conversation. It is an excellent habit to adopt about anything that may be important enough to be part of the record.
RECORD IEP TEAM MEETINGS
Yes, we know, this feels a bit adversarial. It is not. It is a way you have a record of the important meeting that sets your child’s placement, supports, and services in place for the next year. Again, with a school district who has always worked well with you, no big deal. However, staff can change, and school administrators move all the time. Things can go smoothly… until suddenly they don’t. If you have a recording of every IEP meeting, then the school gets used to it as just something you do. If and when an issue comes up, you will have the recording. It is well worth doing.
As parents, we understand, As experienced and trained advocates, we can help.
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